Re: Instrumented toilet seats

From: Michael S. Lorrey (
Date: Fri Jul 21 2000 - 15:37:34 MDT

"Ross A. Finlayson" wrote:
> Hi,
> I want the government to pay me to make part of the national ballistic
> missile defense.

You and every other dogbert wannabe.

> My plan is to put up four or five thousand microsatellites in very plotted
> orbits thus to not be space debris that at any time could be aimed at
> hostile booster rockets on the way up thus to avoid the issue of
> discriminating among multiple reentry warheads.

Since you would need four or five thousand of your microsats in a
trajectory locus with launchers likely positions at any given time,
which would only cover a few percent of the globe, you would actually
need about a hundred thousand such satellites.

> That plan would cost less and subsidize the development of inexpensive
> launch mchinery, perhaps even the National Aerospace Plane.

Nah, if they are microsats, you only need microrockets (and you'll make
microprofits, just ask Henry Ford III)
> So, this thread is telling me that to get business from the government
> requires a lot of lawyers and contract writers. The rest, of course, would
> be subcontracted to real-world engineers.
> Well, a shower curtain might be fireproof and a hammer containing
> micrometers, but ut is still so that the government has paid thousands of
> dollars for a single coffee machine to some green machine purpose.

And teledesic thought they could put up their micro comsats for only $5
million apiece. Bah!

> Of course, we could always encourage the military to subsidize itself with
> bake sales, or, as in the case in which the commander of the U.S. military
> in Colombia has shown how to do: coke sales. Off topic: the right wing
> paramilitary organization sponsored by the government, police, and coke
> sales in Colombia is probably guilty of the most human rights infractions in
> this hemisphere in the last year.

That would be counting on the human rights violations of former Seattle
Police Cheif Norman "stamp my little footie" Stamper at the 'Battle in
Seattle', I presume? ;)

> Here's something to consider: 1/4 of all entire federal budget is military
> or military-construction based. That is to say: about 25 cents of each tax
> dollar, if anyone knew how many there were, are spent on military or
> military construction accounts. Yet, unless one is building things for the
> government ala high-speed low target offset tolerance research testbed
> rockets and thus being paid in the name of that budget, or is otherwise in
> the military, it doesn't do the country any good. The last U.S. limitary
> expedition was Serbia where the U.S. was part of the U.N. forces, where
> there were enough bombs sitting around requiring budget justification to
> drop one on the Chinese embassy. As well, for some time, the U.S. enforced
> the "no-fly" zone over Iraq. Still, we have hundreds of thousands of
> active-duty troops who will never see combat.

Uh, no. Current Military spending is now below 14 percent of outlays.
Most active duty troops in ANY army never see combat, and that is by
design. YOu CANT run a modern military where every member is a combat
troop. Take the Air Force, for example. The average flight squadron is
manned by between 350-800 people, depending on the number of planes in
the squadron, the size of the planes, etc. The 318th Fighter Interceptor
Squadron, for example, was 380 people or thereabouts, with 18 F-15A/B
fighters. We had 24 pilots assigned to the squadron, ten of whome were
in command positions, so they only maintained their ratings mostly, and
did little extensive flying. We had about 12 security police assiged
from the SP squadron on base to provide security (i.e. not counted in
the 380). So 14-24 out of 380 people in the unit actually would see
combat if the unit was called into action, or about 3-6%. The rest of us
were weapons qualified, and a few were security adjutants, like me, to
do anti-sniper support on the flight line in addition to our normal
duties working on planes. If a war overseas came up, not all units would
go, since we would need to keep some home and some in reserve to send to
another hotspot if it sprang up in the meantime, so lets say 1 out of 3
units gets sent overseas to a war, which means in a war, 1-2 percent of
the manpower of the US Air Force Tactical Air Command would actually be
'in combat', and thats the way it should be. Those 99-98% of the
manpower are what enable that 1 or 2 percent to do their jobs flying
those combat planes. The planes wouldn't fly if those ground people were
also infantry troops sitting in a trench fighting the bad guys at the

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